Thursday, December 29, 2011

New Years Eve 2012

As another year winds down all I can say is I am happy to Ring in the New Year with a tweentastic party tomorrow night. These ice cream cones will be a hit with the girls!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

4th Grade Christmas Party

Yesterday was Emily's 4th Grade class Christmas party & as I walked by the Snowflake Tree I got a fuzzy feeling I was gonna have fun joining in on all the Reindeer games.

With snacks like this waiting, I new for sure I was in for a treat.

Stuff the Santa was one station that was a big hit divided up into four teams. Each team selected a Santa, planned their stuffing actions & when ready got one minute to stuff Santa with as many balloons as possible.

I missed snapping the fourth teams efforts but here is the winning Santa below proudly wearing his bow! Presents were awarded to the whole team Barracuda for having the most balloons totaling 38...

Emily managed to get her present of Gummy Bears a little earlier than the rest of her team. LoL She new she had won & helped herself to the winnings! :o)

Another very sweet station was the yummy butter creamed frosting Christmas cookie station. All the kids participated in this one & definitely liked a lot of frosting with their cookies sprinkled with love.

What's Christmas without snow globes? I loved this station. Seeing all the kids gaze into their finished globe as if staring magic in the eye made my heart glow like Rudolph's nose. The children had three choices to pick from for their little figurine inside...Christmas tree, gingerbread man or a snowman. These globes will bring many years of joy to all their homes every season.

On a cold winter night was the start of a story that everyone in class had to continue with a sentence each. With warning from the teacher the story was "kept clean." :o)

Monday, December 19, 2011

Singing The National Anthem

Looking forward to Breanna singing with her fifth grade choir at a couple of informal performances in January and February. They will be singing the National Anthem at two Varsity sporting events at Minnetonka High School. First, on Tuesday, January 24th (7pm) at the Girls Basketball Game vs. Osseo. And secondly, on Thursday, February 2nd (7pm) at the Varsity Wrestling Match vs. Eden Prairie.

Family Activities: Fun Ways to Celebrate Christmas Eve and Christmas Day

Family Activities: Fun Ways to Celebrate Christmas Eve and Christmas Day

Elf on The Shelf

Our Elf on the Shelf will be making his 1st annual visit to our home today. As the story goes, he watches over the children and reports back to Santa every night. Every morning til Christmas the girls will have to find where he landed.
With 6 days left til Christmas today he will “make his appearance” when the girls come home from school they will have to give him a name when they spot him. My job will be remembering to move him.

Looking forward to this fun new family tradition the last week til Santa comes. Christmas Eve we will have a send off party for our Elf on the Shelf til next year!

Photos to come!

Do you have an Elf in your house? What did you name him? What are some of the best places the kids have found him?

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Holiday Lights in Hopkins

101 Ridgewood Dr.Hopkins, MN Going tonight for a Hopkins holiday tradition for many years to see a wonderful light show after the Holidazzle Parade where Dr. Santa will be passing out candy canes. The home is of Rick, Lynn and Andy Rozell, where they will have more than 20,000 lights shining. We happen to have the in's with this Santa. Rick works with Derek so my girls better be on their best behavior tonight! :o)

Portable North Pole

How convenient for all the Naughty girls & boys young & old to find out what list they made. I wake up the other morning to find an email from PNP & I unfortunately made the naughty list ...Gotta love Breanna :o) Of course she puts dad on the nice list, really? How does he rate? At least Santa knows I want shoes. I am just waiting to see what lists Breanna & Emily make.
Only 8 days left better get your list in!

Lights Lighting up Nationwide showcases the Bennett family display in north-central Florida.
Christmas in Shirley showcases a display in Shirley, New York.
Christmas Utah is Marty Slack's spectacular display in (where else?) Utah. In addition to tens of thousands of animated lights and displays, this has to be one of the few displays that features live music! This is a great site that contains videos of displays and many tips for the display enthusiast. I learned a few things there, and I've been doing this a long time!
Christmas Spectacular is Scott Hardin's display in Columbus, Indiana. Scott also created the great logo for
Crazy4holidays Display pictures: 'Crazy' does displays for Halloween, Christmas, and Easter.
Computerized Christmas is a display that started in an apartment from the beginning then went to a home. Jeremy will be documenting his progress as he computerizes his display.
Dominik Rabenaldt is a teenager with his own display and website.
Drew Hickman's pages discuss his own displays, as well as some hints for creating your own, and some technical info about computer control. is Marc Mousseau's award winning display in Hudson, NH.
The Klein's Holiday Lights features pictures of their growing display.
Ron Lister has a very nice display, and his website includes pictures and a video clip
LightHog's Christmas Lights Page contains some repair and technical information, including some circuit schematics for controlling lights. is the online home of Timothy Howse's CHRISTmasland display in the Detroit area. His display is dedicated to celebrating the
true meaning of Christmas, Jesus Christ.
Scott Loftus has a nice display in Sherman, Illinois.
Magic Christmas is an unusual Christmas light display located in Alexandria, LA, hosted by Walter and Jackie Monkhouse, one of the nicest couples one could ever meet. This site showcases the display, which features a light show, a real train, and real lighted toys. .
Mark Obermiller's House of Lights: Showcases Mark's spectacular Christmas light-shows, with spreading the Good News of the birth of Jesus as its primary focus. I was fortunate enough to see several of these shows via videotape.
Mike Sigmond has a nice display controlled by Light-o-Rama.
Our Christmas House is a display in New Zealand
That Christmas House is a display in North Plainfield, New Jersey The Parcell Family of Geneva, IL has a display of 26,500 lights and a nice website. is the online home of Jeff and Rhonda Womack's display near San Antonio, Texas.
showcases Zac Cutt's computer-controlled Christmas display in Holland Landing, Onterio.
Zimmerman Christmas Lights is a great display in Balboa Island, California with the theme "Walking in a Wired Wonderland".

Plymouth, MN Lights Up for the Holidays!

Plymouth Lights is the annual Christmas lighting display of Tim and Cathy Fischer and family. They are located in Plymouth, MN
Their display features lights that "dance to music" through computer-controlled programming and songs broadcasting over an FM frequency so you can watch the display in the warmth of your car so you enjoy the light show. Their hope is that those who see their display will come away not only with fond Christmas memories, but also will come away remembering the reason they celebrate Christmas - the birth of Jesus Christ.
Be sure to do a drive by if your in the area!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Elfin it Like Buddy!

I have a date with an escalator this weekend at Macy's Downtown to be Elfin it up again!

Tis The Season for Giving

I can't help every time this year to inventory all my blessings when everywhere I go I see lots of great organizations & events teaming up with such a great cause to help the less fortunate. It always reminds me of the times my family was in need & not necessarily on the great path we presently are on. I always told myself the time will come when I can repay in a way of giving back. If it's cans of food, clothing, blankets all those over excess of "things" I attach myself too, I have learned to let go & give. The other night while looking on our food shelf I was picking out cans for Emily to bring to school & I caught myself asking the question...What would a family want to eat...tomato paste, no...cans I haven't opened in months for a reason no, I went for the Ravioli's, yummy beans & vegetables & rice & pasta. Emily talked about the donation box in her class & was excited to bring it in because she said there wasn't much in her classes box.

ICA's Current Needs

Canned Beans (black, northern, kidney, etc)

Macaroni & Cheese

Bagged Rice

Peanut Butter


Canned Salmon

Misc. Vegetables (except green beans, corn or peas)


Current Wish List

New Camera

8.5" x 11" Acrylic Frames


Tomorrow night I am looking forward for to Breanna's Girl Scout Troop going to to learn about what His House does & to bring the donations the troop has been collecting. I love that the troop will have their part in serving their community by providing direct services to families in need. Giving without expecting anything in return. That's what it's all about!

The Mission & Value Statements of both Organizations.

ICA's Intercongregation Communities Association
To offer hope as we provide assistance to our neighbors in need

Our Vision
To uphold the dignity of our neighbors in need as they strive for self-sufficiency

To share the ongoing work of assisting our neighbors in partnership with the congregations, organizations, businesses and individuals in our communities

His House Foundation
The organizational values that govern the work of His House Foundation are:

His House Foundation is about putting faith into action and bringing hope and help to transform lives. It is about serving God by serving others.

His House Foundation is a community of individuals supporting each other to reclaim our innate mental, emotional, and spiritual integrity and reconnect fully with our unique purpose in the world.

His House Foundation is committed in carrying out our mission in such a way which shows respect for others. We are committed in implementing our mission in a way which considers the feelings of the host family in a non-judgmental way.

His House Foundation believes that human mutuality is based on love, respect, servitude, kindness.

His House Foundation was founded upon the call to serve Christ and to serve our fellow man with benevolence. This is a call which we accept with humility and gratitude. We believe that we have been saved to serve.

It is our goal to portray these values in our relationships with our community partners, families and individuals seeking our services, volunteers, donors and all others with whom we serve.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

A Snowflake is Winters Butterfly

Emily one like this a few years back. I loved how big and beautiful it was in blue & white colors. I was so bummed when it was accidentally destroyed by a puppy! :( Guess I know what I'm doing with all my pretty as a snowflake scrap paper now! Excellent tutorial!

Hats Off to This Yumminess

If it weren't for January New Year's Resolutions I would not indulge myself in all these yummy baked treats! ; )

Tall is Better

I have to add to my one of these glasses I have. So adorable!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Perfect Party Shoes for Christmas

I've modge podged a few pair of shoes in the past but never did I think to use Lego's for Stiletto's Love them!

Home Depot Fun

Our luck that we found Santa at Home Depot & he directed us to right where his elves were building snowman.

turned into lovely napkin holders

Snow Ball Fun

Oh I absolutely love this simple but adorable idea. I'm gonna make Big ones with the girls for outside! What a great winter sleepover idea when the girls have friends over!

Well these put the nail on the head to Christmas

Love these designs!

Rudolf The Rednose Reindeer

I want to eat his shiny nose on these adorable donuts!

Santa Baby ~ Brownies

Early present for self today...Mini cupcake pans!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

It's a Flom World After All

I love our little bubble we live in. As a family we really do do our best to encapsulate every moment as if it were our last. However, I chose to stay inside the warmth tonight & listen to my traditional Christmas music channel, finish folding clothes & deal with puppy potty training still, yes Charlie did just start to pee, while Derek took Breanna & Emily swimming on a very balmy 9 degree night. I had to copy Dereks facebook post which reads..."Its a balmy 9 degrees must be time to swim! Just need to remember not to leave swim bag in my truck! — at The Pool - Lifetime Fitness Center....Many other great posts I could think of that gets my blood boiling like .."It's a steamy 77 degrees in my cozy house, fire place glowing, music softly playing & my heart is full of love" Where's hallmark when you need them? ; )
So Derek has the girls at the pool & is paying them .50 cents for each time they go down the slide to earn money for tomorrows Secret Santa shop at their school. They left with intention of going down 40 times to get 24$ each. Looking forward to hear the results. Earlier Breanna came home & was telling me all the details about her field trip today to The Kindness Retreat...Light bulb turned on & I suggested "how about you blog about it all then I can read it always" Immediately I loved the idea of getting both my girls excited about blogging about their days for mom & dad. Well it turned into a business right away. Breanna says, "How much are you gonna pay me?" A penny a word seemed very fair. "No, 10 cents" she says. After bickering about words for a blog I came back with .05 cents a word and she agreed. I set her up & away she started typing. She was busy blogging for close to an hour. I even commented, "what's taking so long?" "I'm putting extra words in" she says. For money! Well I think in the end this was a real good penny earned in my book for Breanna. When she was done she speaks loudly with joy, "Come look I posted it" She was tickled to show me how long it was! :o) Her next statement..."check how many words there are now?" Word count complete, tally back, 613 words...She jumped up to the ceiling with happiness, laughing! lol Well moral of the story I have to pay up or her blogging days are over...& I much appreciated her blog to let that cease. Emily says "You didn't want me to write about my field trip" oops well Yes I do & actually I honestly have hers started just not posted so she's ahead of the game...Stay tuned for her Orchestra Hall field trip she took last week to see Hansel & Gretel. If only I could rewrite in her words the excitement she shared about it!

"It's a world of laughter
A world of tears
It's a world of hopes
And a world of fears
There's so much that we share
That it's time we're aware
It's a small (Flom) world after all

There is just one moon
And one golden sun
And a smile means
Friendship to every one
Though the mountains divide
And the oceans are wide
It's a small (Flom) world after all" ~ The Sherman Brothers

5th Grade Kindness Retreat

Hi my name is Breanna and you might have heard of me from my mom’s posts. I go to Minnewashta Elementary School and I am a magnificent 10 years old. I just started the 5th Grade. I had a field trip today and it was the kindness retreat at Mount Calvary Church in Excelsior, MN. Today once I got to school I had to go straight to Phyed and went roller skating which was really fun. Then right after Phyed we got on the crazy buses and went to the kindness retreat. Once we got there we went inside the church's gym and we set are coats/jackets on the side of the gym. They were playing music and there were these three adults there and a whole bunch of high school kids there and we got name tags with numbers on them my number was number four. The adult’s names were Kk, Sam and Molly. Kk was telling us to dance right after we put are coats down and they were playing the song Dynamite. Then Kk told us to go sit in between the two speakers and they started playing more songs that they told us to sing which was really fun. Then we split into three groups and made thunder storm sounds and rain storm sounds which is really cool and it sounded like really real. After that Kk told us how she was bullied in 5th Grade and then each high school kid got a sheet and a number, pencil and we had to find our group leaders and I was number four so I had to find my leader and when I found my leader we had to sit in a circle. My leaders name was Kelly Stacker she was really nice. So we had to list ten things on what types of bulling is happening at are school. After that we had to play a game called fist of five it was really fun. I forgot to mention the other kids that were in my group there names were Molly, Jacob, Elise, Matt and Garret. So after are small groups Molly told us to sit in between the speakers again. So we sang more songs which were so fun and funny we also did dances which was also fun and funny. Then Sam played a song that he wrote and it was called (My sweet old Granny). It was really funny. Then Sam told us how he was bullied in 5th Grade and then we went back into are small groups and did another activity. We had to list ten things on how to stop bulling. Then we had to go down to the bathrooms wash are hands come back and get are lunches then sit in are small groups and eat lunch for about a half-n-hour. Then we got out of are small groups did more dancing and singing which that time was really fun and funny cause we learned a really awesome cool dance. Then Molly told how she was bullied in 5th Grade and we had to get back into are small groups and do another activity. So we had to think of ten ways how to stop bulling and ten ways on how to make people come friends. Then we played duck gray duck until the other groups were ready. Then we played a game called Soul Train which was really fun. Then we had to write on a piece of paper about bulling and share it if we wanted to. But after that we got kindness button pins and headed back to school. That was my 5th grade Kindness retreat. - Breanna

Minnesota Landscape Arboretum

Minnesota Landscape Arboretum

Minnesota Festivals & Events : Explore Minnesota Tourism

Minnesota Festivals & Events : Explore Minnesota Tourism

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Friday, Emily went on a school field trip to Orchestra Hall in Minneapolis to see Hansel & Gretel she absolutely loved the story & pulled up images so she can share about each character. Wish they needed parent chaperones for this trip. My music was orchestrated by nature that morning while walking Charlie down to the lake & listening to the slight sound of puppy feet sliding on ice. Can't wait for it to thicken up, I love walking on frozen water & hearing the howls of ice beneath my feet. Eerie! Girls came home with a friend for a sleepover & we had planned on seeing Arthur's Christmas...what a true holiday delight. The movie took me back to when I was a little girl sitting by the window looking up in hopes to see Santa & his reindeer glide by in the sky. Never saw him but I still do BELIEVE! The movie had me & my husband in tears & definitely with a much bigger HEART for the magic of Christmas. Especially looking more forward to donating toys next weekend for ALL children to get a present Christmas morning. We then came home & the girls turned our kitchen into a Gingerbread village.

O' Christmas Tree, O' Christmas Tree

I love Sunday mornings especially when the house is all quiet, outdoors are covered with 3-4 inches of a white powdery blanket & not a creature is stirring not even a mouse. Christmas music playing & my mind content on a beautiful weekend to look back on. Yesterday since we didn't make it to the Reindeer Run because a few people in the house couldn't wake up in time, not mentioning any names, we decided to get our tree. First stop my husband thought lets go to Minnesota's largest candy store to check it out only to drive all the way out there to see a sign opening next July. oops! So next was Chaska's Holiday Family Fun in their cute downtown business district. Treats were in every store, including a yummy one for Charlie who has yet to leave his bone behind, & a few Christmas presents ok well another dress for me at Lillian's...I just love their clothes well everything under their roof quite frankly. Another score was a yummy Dark Sweet Cherry Balsamic Vinegar...mmm I can just taste it already in Derek's cooking. Onward to pick the perfect tree at Minnesota's very own Home Depot Tree Farm. Trees, trees & more trees...balsam firs, mixed spruces, frasiers on and on I am not picky when it comes to trees, just something big, full & tall. After all the looking, I found the perfect one we all agreed on! whew! First comment out of Derek's mouth..."it's too big" No such thing! Tree fits well in the perfect corner of our house that we will be decorating today! :o) The best part of the picking the tree was watching the man wrap it like a present! In the store we found Santa & what perfect hats the girls were wearing. Santa directed us to his favorite corner in the store where they were having a Snowman building party. An hour later three very happy girls had made Snowman napkin holders Best message I love to live by..."Everywhere I go, there I am" making memories! :o)

Friday, December 2, 2011

Advent Calendars 2011

Tis the Season to Advent Calendars. My girls love getting them each year as much as I did growing up. Mine used to come each year from Germany, I would so love getting them from my Aunt Anniemitz. I can just taste the German chocolate in my mouth now. I should order them from Germany now that I think of it for my girls in the future. Hello wake up we now have the world wide web Elizabeth...ding ding ding!
Needless to say what my daugthers don't know won't hurt them!
I wish I was the super creative mom...because I have been looking at all these fabulous Advent Calendar ideas this last week & there are fabulous ones out there. I especially love this one I now have a new reason to go to Home Depot's paint section. Who'd a thought paint chip samples could be used for this & a few other projects I have found. I can see it now..."Chaska mom arrested at Home Depot for taking one too many paint chip samples" hahaha But very clever creative moms out there & I would stand up for those rights to not be violated by the "Law"
I have yet to venture to Home Depot but this weekend we are going to the Tree Farm that is located in the suburbia farm of the Home Depot parking lot & getting our Christmas Tree. So I might be found in the paint section of the store, just browsing! What are we called "Starving Artists" yeah that's it! So if I get to making this wonderful Advent Calendar a few days already into December it will bring the joy I so vision. Stay tuned for pictures to follow of the Paint Chip Creations. ; )

My Little Orchie

"Life is one grand, sweet song. So, start the music"
~Ronald Reagan

Indeed it is! Ever since Emily has started Orchestra we have been watching her bloom daily like an Orchid. Love how they are called "Orchies" by their Orchestra Specialist Monica Hahn.

Her first intro to violin was "Plucking" til her lil fingers got sore. Glad that's past because her thumb made mine hurt. The first thing she learned was
UP like a Rocket (jumping off launch pad hand)
Down like the Rain (land on violin hand extended from left side of body with elbo hanging from left side)

In and Out like a Choo Choo Train
(from violin elbo to hand extended straight out in front of the violin shoulder)

Around and around like the Golden Sun

(pulling bow hold up to the violin shoulder on the left side of the body and circle back to the hand, this keeps the ferris wheel from wandering away from the front of the invisible violin)

Dance on my head just for fun

Love this song...I even have it memorized.
Well she has developed since this she now knows how to play "Jingle Bells", "Dreidel" "A Mozart Melody" & "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star" So proud of her & very blessed that this school still has orchestra for elementary students. I have put a little request in that she learn how to play the "Happy Birthday" song by December 15th (my 40th) What a present! Never would I have imagined this 10, 20, 30 + years ago that I would have my two girls to bring me such bliss for a birthday. So Blessed I am!
Yesterday was Emily's first before school practice where in addition to what she has been bringing to her practices she needed to bring her stand for a first time full orchestra band practice. She loved it & from reports from her instructor she loved it as well. Three more before school practices til her Winter Concert December 12th Can't wait to hear the magic to my ears. Then again the lil Orchies get to perform at school on December 22nd for a "December in the Hall" performance for the students, teachers, staff & parents! How lovely! To end again with a very wonderful quote by our former President of the United States, Ronald Reagan "Life is one grand, sweet song. So, start the music"